The Catalans were held by a determined AS Roma team and couldn’t start the defence of their Champions League title with a win
Barcelona could not get their 2015/2016 UEFA Champions League campaign off a winning start as they were held to a 1-1 draw by Italian side AS Roma in their first group game of the tournament.
The Catalans opened the scoring through a Luis. Suarez header on 21 minutes but Alessandro Florenzi scored a 50-yard screamer to give Rudi Garcia’s men a valuable point at the Stadio Olimpico. FlyBarca rates the Barça players.
AS Roma vs FC Barcelona Player Ratings
Marc-Andre Ter Stegen – 6.0
Was caught off his line by an Alessandro Florenzi 50-yard strike. It’s the second time the German conceded a goal of that kind and needs to buckle up. Had a great game aside from the mistake.
Sergi Roberto – 6.5
Another great performance for the midfielder-turned-defender but didn’t provide the spark for the team upfront and his crosses were lacking precision.
Gerard Pique – 6.0
Returned to the starting line-up after missing out on the last 3 games through suspension and wasn’t bad, except for the yellow card he got for a foul on Edin Dzeko.
Jeremy Mathieu – 7.0
Had a solid game throughout and really helped in the air, his spectacular passed contributed immensely to the build up to Barça’s goal.
Jordi Alba – 7.0
Was in a personal sprint duel with Mohamed Salah on the left and the spanish left-back always came out on top. Could have stolen the show in the dying stages after clinging unto a Messi pass but his shot was cleared off the line.
Sergio Busquets – 6.5
Not his best game but he often controlled the game at crucial times, easing the pressure with his fancy movement. A pretty fair performance for his standards.
Ivan Rakitic – 6.5
His superb whipped cross from the right found Luis Suarez at the far post for the opener. Didn’t provide much energy as he often does and was replaced by Rafinha in the second half.
Andres Iniesta – 7.0
Iniesta had a great game. Made a couple of great runs and his defensive contribution was massive. Could have gotten a goal for himself but was denied by Morgan De Sanctis.
Lionel Messi – 7.5
Was Barça’s best player. Looked like he wanted to score on his 100th appearance but was unlucky. Had two powerful shots wide in the first half and forced a diving save from szczensny before hitting the crossbar with a half-volley in the second half.
Luis Suarez – 7.0
Scored Barça’s goal after he nodded in a Rakitic cross from close range. Worked hard throughout the game as usual and should have had a penalty when Szczesny clipped him in the box.
Neymar – 6.5
Found it difficult to break through a tight Roma defence as he was double-marked. Could have gotten a goal in the second half after a beautiful turn in the Roma box.
Rafinha Alcantara – N/A
Replaced Ivan Rakitic in the second half but got injured and was forced off a stretcher few minutes after coming on.
Javier Mascherano – 6.0
Almost gave away a penalty minutes after replacing Rafinha after he was shown dragging Nainggolan back to the ground in the box. Was solid though.